Wow, has it been cold lately!!  The City of Charlotte recommends a few helpful things to prepare for winter, and Deborah Snoonian, Senior Editor of This Old House Magazine, has more tips on keeping your home and yourself warm, while saving a little money in the process:

Winterize your plumbing to prevent pipe breaks:

- Insulate pipes in unheated parts of your home with materials that are available at your local hardware store.  You can reduce energy costs by insulating your water heater also.

- Safeguard against frozen pipes, and seal openings and air leaks in your crawl space or basement.  Use cardboard, plastic or newspaper to seal air vents, if needed.

- Disconnect and drain outdoor hoses and irrigation systems.  Make sure outdoor spigots are off and insulated.

 

Take a look at this article from This Old House that offers handy warm-up-your-house advice like, using your curtains effectively, installing a door sweep to keep out drafts, changing your furnace filter and adjusting your water heater:

 

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,214743,00.html

 

I hope these hints help you stay warm during this unseasonably cold spell we’ve been having!